What’s Emerging? The Errors of Post-Modern Theology

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Pastor Scott L. Harris

Grace Bible Church, NY

June 13, 2010

What’s Emerging? The Errors of Post-Modern Theology

Selected Scriptures

Introduction

I have spent quite a few weeks warning about the dangers of false teachers and mockers that come from without such as the various false religions and cults. These can be based in demonic revelation, eastern mysticism, or a host of man-made theologies. All of these are contrary to the gospel and leave a person condemned by God. (See: Demonic Deception, Experts in Enigmas, and Cultic Oppression). I have also warned about dangers that arise from within the church from theologies based in traditions, experience and marketing efforts. Some of these pervert the gospel and so are very dangerous to your soul, while others are only aberrations that leave their followers spiritually confused and immature. (See: Religions of My Fathers, Spiritual Confusion, and Tickets to Heaven). This morning we examine another danger that has arisen from within the church. Like the efforts to use ideas from marketing to further the gospel which I spoke about last week, it comes as a mixed bag of a few helpful things, some odd things, and some very dangerous elements. This danger comes from what often been called “the emerging church movement.”

The Emerging Church Movement

The emerging church movement is very hard to define precisely. I have read or listened to several men try to do so, but they all admit the same thing. How can you clearly define a movement whose doctrine ranges from liberal to conservative and whose practices range from liturgical to free form? Phil Johnson said of it, “It’s a movement that is purposely foggy and amorphous, fluid and diverse – and most in the movement what to keep it that way.”

What then is the common tie among those who want to identify with the emerging church movement? A desire to reach the post-modern generation in a post-modern way. Biblical Seminary in Hatfield, PA defined their mission statement this way in 2008, “to prepare missional leaders who incarnate the story of Jesus with humility and authenticity and who communicate the story with fidelity to scripture, appreciation of the Christian tradition, and sensitivity to the needs and aspirations of postmodern culture.” Please do not ask me what that means, because I can only guess at it since it is so fuzzy. I thought the purpose of para-church organizations, such as a seminary, was to come alongside the church and help her fulfill her mission in making disciples of Jesus Christ. The mission statement of my alma-mater is clear enough, “The Master’s Seminary exists to advance the kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ by equipping godly men to be pastors and/or trainers of pastors for excellence in service to Christ in strategic fields of Christian ministry.” It is seeking to train men who will go out and take a leadership role in fulfilling the great commission.

I bring up the example of Biblical Seminary early simply to illustrate how widespread and deep the effect has been from the ideas common to the emerging church. Those that I have known that are close to my age that have trained at Biblical Seminary were solid in the theology and ministry. I am very skeptical about what is being produced there now – more on that a little later.

The idea of reaching the current generation of young adults according to its own characteristics is nothing new. Churches have been striving to do that for several generations, often to its own detriment as I briefly pointed out last week. Churches that cater to youth exacerbate the generational gap by highlighting and emphasizing the differences instead of diminishing them.

Properly, churches should be a place where the young and old mix together with the young showing respect to the older and the older mentoring the young in living the Christian life. The wisdom gained through years of walking with the Lord should be passed down to the next generation and received by those younger with gratitude. Is not most of the book of Proverbs built on that very idea? Large sections of it are instructions from a father to a son (Chapters 1-7, etc.). It is also a common theme within the Psalms as one generation speaks of God to the next (Psalm 44:1,2; 71:18; 78:3f; 145:4 etc.). It is in the command that Moses gave in Deuteronomy 6 to the generation that was about to enter into the promised land so that the generations that would follow them would also know God and His law. This was to be an encouragement to do right before God and receive His blessing, and at the same time, it was also a warning of the curses that would come upon them if they did wrong (Deuteronomy 27-28).

In one sense, the emergent church is simply the effort of churches to try to reach the next generation, but it is making the same mistakes that previous generations made in their effort to do the same. Whenever you cater to the selfishness of a person or group, you only embed them in that selfishness and the immaturity that is part of it. When you are a child, you speak, think and reason as a child, but when you grow up you are supposed to put aside those childish things including that way of thinking and reasoning. Paul made that point in 1 Corinthians 13:11 as he was correcting the Corinthians for their selfish immaturity that was masquerading for what they thought was spiritual maturity. The only thing really different about the emerging church movement from the errors made in previous generations is that the manner of thinking and reasoning among the younger generation has become so much worse. That manner of thinking has also become so widespread that it has become a general characteristic of the generation and it is rising to dominate the culture. We now call it post-modernism.

Modernism

We have to have some idea about modernism in order to understand post-modernism and what it is rejecting. With the rise of the scientific age and rationalism came the idea that man was able to figure out things for himself. The supremacy of theology became diminished as rationalism and scientism ascended. Scientists became the priests of modernism as the white lab coat replaced the clergy collar and frock as the dress of those who could be trusted. Those of you who are older will remember that a large portion of commercials in the 60’s and 70’s and even 80’s depicted someone in a lab coat telling you all the factual reasons why product xyz was best. The lab coat was critical to the image that a scientist was promoting the product and therefore the advice to buy it could be trusted.

Within the church itself, modernism attacked the foundation of the church by challenging the authenticity of the Bible and our means of knowing truth. This led to the great divisions in the main line churches in the 1920’s and 1930’s as the liberal scholars took control of the power structures of the denominations and the conservatives who held to the historic, Biblical faith were either forced out or voluntarily separated themselves from the apostasy. Literary theories such as German Higher Criticism, Wellhausen’s documentary hypothesis, and the two and three source theories of the gospel accounts dominated liberal thinking leading to their rejection of the Scriptures as God’s inspired, inerrant and infallible Word. Evolutionary theory led them to believe that religious thought and the Bible had also evolved in some manner just as animal life had evolved. For them, the Bible was no longer the revelation of God, but the evolving religious musings of men.

While evangelicalism had held onto the fundamentals of Biblical belief, a shift was made among many to neo-evangelicalism which tried to dialogue and work with the liberals. The pressure of modernism resulted in their acceptance of the basic premises within liberalism. Man’s intellect was held in greater sway than God’s word resulting in an authority shift away from the Scriptures. A great portion of those who identify themselves as evangelicals are now in the same theological position as the liberals of the early twentieth century. (Iain Murray presents a history of this through the 20th century in Evangelicalism Divided). This has in turn allowed for those churches to move away from God centered worship and teaching to man centered entertainment, pop psychology and pep talks. This is the door through which the church growth movement and “seeker friendly” churches have walked which I talked about last week. Even the gospel message itself has been diminished in many of them, and lost altogether in others.

While modernism has certainly resulted in a huge leap forward in our technology, its misapplication has been very negative for the church and society as a whole. Modernism went beyond logic and the scientific method to become the philosophies of rationalism and scientism which, oddly enough, can be irrational and contrary to the scientific method, mostly because they seek to make declarations about divine revelation and metaphysical realities.

Post-modernism

To a large degree, post-modernism is a reaction against the excesses of modernism. Modernism demanded precision and rational answers in seeking to formulate theories and laws which would be the absolutes upon which our understanding of the world would be based. Such truths would transcend cultures. Post-modernism rejects objective truth in favor of a fluid and eclectic philosophy toward life in which reality is determined by the individual.

The only absolute for the post-modernist is that there are no absolutes. That may be an irrational statement, but it well fits the post-modern mind which constructs its own particular and personal reality according to one’s own understanding. Such understanding is dependent upon individual experiences and personal interpretation of those experiences so that reality varies from person to person. Truth is considered a contrived illusion and synonymous with error since a “fact” today could be “false” tomorrow. The individual takes bits and pieces from wherever he finds them to formulate a worldview that changes as needed and places an emphasis on the feelings and emotions of the moment regardless of whether they are rational or irrational.

In the post-modern worldview, situational ethics determines right and wrong according to the individual’s interpretation of reality. Political actions are determined by motive and desire regardless of the actual consequences of those actions. Worship of God is determined by the emotions and experiences of the worshiper. Truth is determined by intent and perception of the individual at that moment. Such “truth” can change in a few moments and can be contradictory to other things also claimed by the individual to be true.

To be sure, this philosophical mindset is irrational from the start since its insistent skepticism of all other principles should create skepticism of their own principles. However, personal desire and self justification trump actual truth and reality. Or to state it in more religious terms, sin holds victory over the natural man’s heart.

Post-modernism has risen out of the failures of modernism. The current generation has seen that modernism had not brought utopia to the world, and especially so when utopia is defined according to liberal goals such as: economic equality of outcome instead of equality of opportunity; a unified world; environmental sacredness, moral autonomy without consequences; and religious pluralism. It has also recognized that there is more to life than the material world that modernism has offered. Because modernism, which descended into dialectical materialism, is a poor basis for morality and living a purposeful life, the seeds were sown for a rejection of it. There is a great longing for something spiritual, and people have been turning to all sorts of things to find it.

The mainline denominations have reduced God to a being of man’s imagination who is small, weak and of very little aid or comfort. This has destroyed the substance of worship and left them with only their liturgy which has descended into rote tradition. That might be attractive to the post-modern, except that the liberal’s approach to theology is still characterized by modernism’s theoretical literary analysis that destroys the miracles of the Bible and the mystery of God. Dry lectures filled with boring academics and liberal philosophy do not inspire worship of anything.

Evangelicalism has not done much better because of its own abandonment of Biblical authority in favor of man centered worship according to the dictates of the latest survey. But for a generation that has grown up in a media dominated culture, the entertainment offered is no longer impressive, and the shallow teaching gives little substance to the meaning of life and the mystery of God. The quest of evangelicals has still been to somehow reach this next generation, so it has adapted itself once again to what it thinks they are looking for, and the result has been the emerging church movement. In a real sense, it is nothing more than the next step of the church growth movement and the “seeker sensitive” mindset, except now the methodology and the message are adapted to post-modern thought.

Biblical Incompatibility

What has been missed by the emerging church movement is the utter incompatibility of post-modern thought with the Bible. It is not that the Bible upholds modernism, for it does not. I have already pointed out modernism’s destructive influence upon the church as it changed the source of authority from God to rationalism and scientism. Post-modernism rejects the objectivity of these but still leaves the source of authority squarely within man’s mind instead of God’s revelation. Even worse, that source of authority is now the individual instead of a philosophical system in which an understanding of truth could at least be debated. The gospel and post-modernism are mutually exclusive. To adapt the gospel to the post-modern mind destroys the gospel, and the gospel of Jesus Christ destroys the post-modern mind.

What do I mean by that? The good news of Jesus Christ demands intellectual acknowledgment of particular facts as absolute truth that transcend all cultures. It then demands repentance of previous beliefs and acceptance of new beliefs based on those truths with a life that reflects that change in belief system. The post-modern man rejects such truth claims. Let’s quickly examine some of the basic incompatibilities of post-modernism and the gospel.

1) Either God exists, or He does not. In Exodus 3:14 God says He does calling Himself, “I am who I am.” God is the self existing one.

2) Either God has created the world or He has not. Genesis 1, Psalm 148, Isaiah 45, John 1, Colossians 1 and a host of other Scriptures say that He did.

3) Either man is sinful by nature and each individual has personally broken God’s commands earning themselves His just condemnation, or man is not and his failures and mistakes are of no eternal consequence. Romans tells us that there is none righteous, that all have sinned and the wages of that sin is death.

4) Either God will hold man accountable to Himself, or He will not. Hebrews 9:27 tells us that He will, and Revelation 20:11-15 details that future judgement.

5) Either Jesus is the promised Messiah, the Son of God, or He is not. Jesus said He is (Luke 22:70). He is Immanuel, God in human flesh (Matthew 1:23).

6) Either Jesus lived a sinless life, or He did not. Hebrews 4:15 tells that though Jesus was tempted in all points, yet He was without sin. Even Jesus’ enemies could not convict Him of sin (John 8:46).

7) Either Jesus willingly died on the cross as the atonement for sin, the substitute payment for our sin, or He did not. Numerous scriptures state that is exactly what He did (Matthew 26:28; Romans 5:6-8; 1 Peter 3:18, Revelation 1:5, etc.).

8) Either Jesus physically rose from the dead demonstrating His power over death and ability to keep His promises, or He did not. That is the conclusion of all the gospels and the message of the epistles. Paul even states in 1 Corinthians 15 that if Jesus has not been raised from the dead, then his preaching was in vain, the Christian’s faith was worthless and were of all men most to be pitied – but Christ has been raised from the dead.

9) Either Jesus ascended bodily into heaven, from which He will one day return in like manner, or He did not and will not. Acts 1 records that the apostles watched Him ascend and the angel that appeared told them He would return in like manner.

10) Either Jesus will keep His promise to forgive the sins of those who repent and believe in Him, or He will not. The message of the gospels and the New Testament epistles is that He will because He is faithful and just (1 John 1:9).

11) Either Jesus will one day return from Heaven for His followers and take them to be with Him forever, or He will not. Jesus said He would (John 14:1-3).

12) Either we can know that we are redeemed from our sins and have eternal life, or we can’t. The apostle John wrote in 1 John 5:13, “These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, in order that you may know that you have eternal life.”

The main problem for the post-modern mind is that none of this can be known for certain since truth is relative and ever changing for them. They cannot have any absolutes that transcend all cultures, yet all of these are propositional truths that apply to every human that has ever lived or will live. They cannot accept Jesus’ statement that He is the way, the truth and the life and that no one comes to the Father except through Him (John 14:6). They cannot even accept the fact that they are actually sinful and accountable to God since they view morality as a personal code of ethics (which, by the way, Romans 2 tells us they will violate their own code anyway).

You cannot use post modern thought which rejects absolute truth to reach people with a message that demands acceptance of absolute truths as revealed by God. Yet, when all is said and done, that is what the emerging church movement is trying to do. One or the other must give way in the real world. Only in the make believe world of post- modernism can someone claim to be saved and a follower of Jesus while rejecting His teachings.

Emergent Nonsense and Heresies

There is a wide range in what is believed and even more so in what is practiced by post-moderns since within their system beliefs are ever changing and do not have to be consistent with practice. This has in turn led to a wide range of strategies used by those who are seeking to reach the post-modernist within their own paradigm. These strategies range from being silly to outright heresy.

I have found it interesting that as time has gone on, those that were part of the conservative wing of the emerging church movement are no longer self identifying with it. They have seen that the dialogue within that community has been becoming increasingly nonsensical and heretical and so they have distanced themselves from it. They have kept some of their aberrations of practice, but at least they understand that the gospel is propositional truth that cannot be compromised.

Let me give you some examples of common aberrations within the emerging church. These are not heretical, but neither do they arise from Biblical practice nor principles.

1) Use of crude language. Ed Colon exchanged emails with a fellow he had heard a couple of years ago that did this and was not only crude, but also disparaging of his audience. His response to Ed was that he believed the Bible was written in the vernacular and that he needed to use language that would connect to the people to whom he was speaking. However, there is a big difference between common language and vulgar language. And more importantly, Ephesians 4:29 specifically tells us, “Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such [a word] as is good for edification according to the need [of the moment,] that it may give grace to those who hear.” How does crude and vulgar language fit within that command? Do we determine our actions based on the Scriptures or what we think is best?

2) Dialogue instead of sermons. Dialogue is a great method of teaching when done correctly and we find examples of it throughout the scriptures. However, it is not to be done to the exclusion of preaching nor is it to be done in a manner that reduces the authority of the Scriptures. Paul told Timothy to “preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with great patience and instruction” (2 Timothy 4:2). Timothy was to speak with authority because he was proclaiming the Scriptures and calling people to live by them. One of the dangers of that can occur in dialogue is when those in the conversation view themselves as equals. Within some circles of the emerging church, the Scriptures are viewed as only one more voice in the conversation and not with superior authority.

3) Ancient-Future Worship. In some ways this is the next phase that is occurring within the movement as those within it continue their search for something of substance within worship. There is one side of this that is just different from standard conservative evangelical forms of worship, and another side that is dangerous and heretical.

On the just different side, there is nothing inherently wrong with looking back to past practices within the church for traditions that can be helpful in the worship of God. However, as I said last week, there has to be an understanding of the meaning and purpose of the tradition. Liturgy can be beautiful and meaningful, or just rote and quaint. Lighting candles is not anti-Biblical depending on the purpose of it. Neither is devotional reading of scripture and praying accordingly if that is what is actually being done. There is room for a lot of variation and still be true, genuine worship of God.

On the dangerous and heretical side, these, and a host of other practices arising within the Ancient-Future worship paradigm, are not actually tied to carrying out Biblical principles, but simply repeating practices developed from the second – seventh centuries, most of which became foundational for Roman Catholic liturgy and mystical practices. These would include lectio divina, the Divine Office in which particular prayers are recited, use of the rosary, prayer ropes, Stations of the Cross, icons, crucifixes, incense, Benedictine chants and more. For that reason, they could be detrimental and even contrary to true worship. Doug Pagitt has stated that he has found the act of making the sign of the cross on himself a “very powerful experience” for him. Tony Campolo stated that his “intimacy with Christ has developed gradually over the years, primarily through what Catholic mystics call ‘centering prayer.’” Interestingly, those promoting Ancient-Future worship do not go back to Acts, the epistles or the early church to determine what they are doing, for those sources place the emphasis upon apostolic doctrine, prayer, communion and fellowship (Acts 2:42, see Apology by Justin Martyr).

There are also practices common within the emerging church movement that are heretical, which should not be surprising since doctrine is not critical to them. Here are just a couple of disturbing quotes from leaders in the emerging church movement that are published in Roger Oakland’s book, Faith Undone.

From Brian McClaren, “the book of Revelation is an example of popular literary genre of ancient Judaism . . . instead of being a book about the distant future, it becomes a way of talking about the challenges of immediate present.” In other words, Revelation is not prophecy, but a book to inspire those currently oppressed. He was honest enough to admit, “When we change the medium, the message that’s received is changed, however subtly, as well. We might as well get beyond our naivete or denial about this.” The change in methodology within the emerging church movement has changed the message of the gospel.

From Donald Miller, “for me, the beginning of sharing my faith with people began by throwing out Christianity and embracing Christian spirituality, a nonpolitical mysterious system that can be experienced but not explained.” In other words, his gospel is not founded in proclaiming the propositional truths of God’s word, but in inviting people to join in mysterious experiences.

Marcus Borg was more direct in saying, “I let go of the notion that the Bible is a divine product.” He holds to fairly standard ideas from liberal theology that the Bible is not from God and therefore without divine authority.

I pointed out the mission statement from Biblical Seminary early in this sermon. Let me now point out some disturbing things from their 2006 doctrinal statement. They see themselves as “a community that affirms a generous orthodoxy in the Reformed tradition.” Much of their statement of beliefs is fine, though stated oddly raising unanswered questions. For example, they avoid describing God in standard theological terms and instead say things like, “He is infinite in his wisdom and knowledge . . . “ A true statement, but do they believe He is also infinite in all other areas including time (eternal) and space (omnipresent)? They state God is “unchangeable in his love,” but do not state if He is immutable in any other way. There are several areas of theology left unmentioned, but what is most disturbing is its statement concerning salvation.“Salvation is deliverance from alienation, guilt, bondage, and death, as well as restoration to fellowship, righteousness, freedom, and life, for all who trust in Jesus Christ and him alone.”

The statement mentions Adam’s rebellion against God in an earlier section and states this subjected mankind to “sin’s power,” but why isn’t the word sin used when describing salvation? The angel told Joseph that Jesus would “save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21). John the Baptist proclaimed of Jesus, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). The apostles proclaimed the forgiveness of sins through Jesus (Acts 13:38). The apostle John put it directly stating that “the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7) and that Jesus “Himself is the propitiation for our sins” (1 John 2:2). Revelation 1:5 says that Jesus “released us from our sins by His blood.” Salvation from sin allows the other things mentioned in the doctrinal statement, so why is salvation from sin avoided? I am not trying to nitpick, but this is the doctrinal statement of a seminary, not a testimony of belief from a new Christian.

The issues of the emerging church movement and the Ancient-Future worship that are arising out of it are serious ones, for they have been born out of post-modern quests, and post-modernism is antithetical to the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

How do we reach the post-modern? The same way in which all people of all time in all cultures have been reached. We proclaim the propositional truths of God’s word and let the Holy Spirit work. God’s word will accomplish its purpose and not return void (Isaiah 55:11). It is the Holy Spirit’s work to bring them to conviction of sin, righteousness and judgment, enlighten their minds to understand the message of the gospel, and quicken their souls to respond in repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Certainly care is taken to proclaim the message in a manner that will be understandable to the post-modern, but that is done as a challenge to their belief system, not in acquiescence to it.

Jesus said of the Scriptures, “Thy word is truth” (John 17:17). He said of Himself, “I am the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father, but through Me” (John 14:6). He also said, “If you abide in My word, [then] you are truly disciples of Mine; and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:31-32). If we are His disciples, we must proclaim the same message as Jesus and do so without compromise. Let us never give in to those who do not have the truth, but attack us because we do.

KIDS CORNER

Parents, you are responsible to apply God’s Word to your children’s lives. Here is some help. Young Children – draw a picture about something you hear during the sermon. Explain your picture(s) to your parents at lunch. Older Children – 1) Write down all the verses mentioned. 2) Count how many times the phrase “post modern” is used. 3) Talk with your parents about the importance of knowing truth.

 

THINK ABOUT IT!

Questions to consider in discussing the sermon with others. What is the origin false teachers and mockers? Why are they dangerous to the church? What is the “emerging church movement”? What is the danger of catering to the selfish interests of a group? What should the relationship be between older and younger generations within the church? What is modernism and what are some of its major characteristics? How has modernism attacked the church and Biblical doctrine? What is post-modernism and what are some of its major characteristics? Why is post-modernism inherently irrational? Why is post-modernism incompatible with Biblical Christianity? Why is it contrary to the gospel of Jesus Christ? What Biblical truths must be believed in order to be saved? Why would a post-modern reject those truths? What does the Bible teach about the use of crude, vulgar language? How is dialogue helpful in teaching? What are its dangers? How does it differ from preaching? What are the positives and negatives of looking back at ancient practices for ways in which to enhance modern worship? What are some of the ancient practices within Roman Catholicism are contrary to the Scriptures? List out any of the heretical statements from emerging church leaders of which you are aware. How can the post-modern person be reached with the gospel? What is Jesus’ view of truth? What must we do if we are truly Jesus’ disciples?

Sermon Notes – 6/13/2010

What’s Emerging? The Errors of Post-Modern Theology

Introduction

There are dangers from __________ the church – theologies from false religions and cults

There are dangers that arise from _____the church – theologies from traditions, experience & marketing

The Emerging Church Movement

Though hard to define, its common tie is the desire to reach post-modern people in a ____________ way

Reaching the next generation according to its own characteristics is nothing ______- but it is detrimental

Healthy churches ________generational differences with the wisdom of the aged passed on to the youth

When you cater to the selfishness of a group, you embed that selfishness and its _____________

Modernism

The scientific age and rationalism brought the idea that man can figure things out for ___________

Scientists became the _________ of modernism

Modernism attacked the authenticity of the __________ and our means of knowing truth

______________ theories resulted in a rejection of the Scriptures by liberals

Evolutionary theory was applied to religions resulting in their belief the Bible also ___________.

Neo-evangelicals yielded to the pressures of modernism and _________the basic premises of liberalism

Modernism surpassed logic and the scientific method to become __________of rationalism & scientism

Post-modernism

It rejects objective truth for ____________ philosophies in which reality is determined by the individual

The only absolute for the post-modernist is that there are ________________

For the post-modernists, ______is ever changing and contradictory beliefs can be held at the same time.

Post-modernism has risen out of the ____________ of modernism

Modernism reduced God to a being of man’s __________ – small, weak and of very little aid or comfort

A generation raised on media is not ____________by evangelical entertainment – or its shallow teaching

The “emerging church” is just the _____step of “seeker sensitive” outreach and next phase of liberalism

Biblical Incompatibility

Modernism was in ___________with the Bible. Post-modernism is ________________to the Bible

Postmodernism _____________ the gospel, and the gospel destroys the post-modern mind

The gospel demands belief in propositional ___________ that transcend all cultures.

Gospel Truths:

1) God ______

2) God _________the world

3) Man is ________by nature & practice

4) God will hold man _____________for his sin

5) Jesus is the ____________, the Son of God

6) Jesus lived a ________life

7) Jesus willing died on the cross as the _____________for sin

8) Jesus physically _________from the dead

9) Jesus physically _______________to heaven

10) Jesus will keep His promise to _____________the sins of those who repent and believe in Him

11) Jesus will ___________for His disciples

12) We can _________that we have eternal life

Post-moderns ___________ propositional truth and Jesus’ absolute statements such as John 14:6

Only in a ____________ world can someone claim to be a follower of Jesus and also reject His teaching

Emergent Nonsense and Heresies

The strategies developed to reach post-moderns range from being __________ to outright heresy

Examples of common aberrations in the emerging church movement:

1) ___________ language

2) ___________ instead of sermons

3) ____________________ Worship (AFW)

Dangerous and heretical practices:

1) AFW practices of _____________- lectio divina, repetitive prayers, the rosary, Stations of Cross, etc.

2) Diminishing or rejecting the ________- Brian McClaren, Donald Miller, Marcus Borg, Rob Bell, etc.

3) ______________ sin / salvation

Reaching the Post-modern: ___________ the word and let the Holy Spirit work

RESOURCES

Gary E. Gilley, This Little Church Stayed Home and This Little Church Had None. EP Books

D.A. Carson, Becoming Conversant with the Emerging Church. Zondervan

John MacArthur, The Truth War,

Stanley Grenz, Primer on Postmodernism

The Master’s Seminary Journal, Volume 17, Number 2, Fall 2006

shepherdsfellowship.org/ Introducing the ECM, November 2006

Iain Murray, Evangelicalism Divided


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